The Nova Scotia review on hydraulic fracturing has released their first five papers, which address the topics of fracking, economics, resource assessment, well bore integrity and water resources. The Council of Canadians is concerned that the paper on water resources lacks submissions previously made by Nova Scotians, field research and input from communities impacted by fracking.
“We are worried that the draft chapter doesn’t take the risks to water resources seriously,” says Angela Giles, Atlantic regional organizer for the Council of Canadians. “The resounding message of the Council of Canadian Academies’ report was that we simply do not know enough about fracking. The draft water chapter outlines steps on how the province could move forward with fracking even though it points out that disposal of fracking wastewater is still ‘an uncertainty’ in the province. We should not be moving forward with fracking if we don’t know what to do with the waste.”
Giles continues, “The vast majority of people who wrote in during the submission portion of the review process oppose fracking, and it’s disappointing that these submissions were not incorporated into this section. Peer-reviewed scientific reports were also submitted on this topic and were not used for this chapter. We urge the panel to incorporate the public’s submissions in the final report.”
“Just last week Dr. John Cherry, the Chair of the Council of Canadian Academies’ expert panel on shale gas, said that there have been no cases of rigorous water monitoring done anywhere in Canada. We urge the Wheeler panel to ensure fracking doesn’t move forward if we don’t have water monitoring data,” says Emma Lui, water campaigner for the Council of Canadians. “The report notes the risk of fracking and warns that ‘residents must also play a monitoring role by having their water regularly tested.’ Communities shouldn’t be put in a situation where they bear such a risk to their drinking water.”
“The points about jurisdictions requiring chemical disclosure are misleading,” adds Lui. “In Canada, companies disclose fracking chemicals strictly on a voluntary basis and governments do not conduct rigorous testing for accuracy of disclosure that is made.”
The Council of Canadians is calling on its supporters and the public to show their opposition to fracking by requesting a meeting with their MLA as well as posting signs, banners or stickers on their houses and cars.